The Nevada County Quorum Court met Tuesday, March 10 for their regular monthly meeting. During the review of financials, Judge Mark Glass informed the Court that later in the year they may go over budget on Road and Bridge Financials due to repairs on 2 trucks. He stated that they have had to replace a transmission in one and a motor in the other. Additionally, a grader also needed a new transmission. Glass said that the budget is in good shape right now, but if they take any more large hits before the end of the year, it could potentially cause an over-budget issue.
The Interim County Collector, Ricky Reyenga, responded to a question about how the trash fees were distributed into the solid waste account. He stated that the funds were collected in his office and dispersed through the treasurer to go into a coded account under solid waste at the end of each month. A question was raised about a way to use a debit or credit card to pay the trash collection fee. Reyenga stated that they had looked into that, but the state will not allow them to do that at this time due to fees associated with credit/debit card transactions. If they are charged a transaction fee each time the card is used, 100% of the fee would not be used for the purposes it is intended for. The state is working on some way to allow this, but right now, it isn’t possible.
Judge Glass updated the court on the Nubbin Hill bridge. He stated that a court order has been filed and the papers have been served to the landowner of right side of road going North. Glass will be talking with Mayor Oliver on Wednesday about the city moving the water line on that property and as soon as they begin, the state department will put the bridge project on the next letting. He stated that the bid process will take about 30 days, but that work should begin soon after.
Judge Glass stated that the court is able to purchase 96 gallon trash cans at $60 each and that they will offer these to the public at that price if anyone is interested in purchasing one. The trash cans have lids that can be locked and are able to be rolled to the end of the driveway for trash pick-up. Glass also stated that trash would have to be bagged before placing it in the cans, but that the county would still manually pick the trash up.
There were 2 citizens with requests to the court. Jeremy Jones, came before the court to inquire if the road he lives on is a county road or not. He said he had lived at this address since 2013 and did not even know that the county offered trash pickup service until he received a letter in the mail, nor had his road ever been graded. Jones presented pictures to the court of county road 148, which is the road he lives on, along with county roads 2, 6, 149 and 17. Jones stated that he has 2 entrances to his home, one on county road 6 and one on county road 149 depicting damage to the roads and repairs that needed to be made. Jones stated that in the 7 years he had lived there that county road 149 had only been graded twice and that they don’t even grade the entire road, but stop right before the curve, and the log trucks are causing further damage to the road, along with washouts from weather. He inquired as to whether the log trucks have permits or not, because there are signs posted that state no trucks without permits. Jones also indicated an issue on County Road 6, stating that 2 vehicles can’t travel the road at the same time due to washouts and tires on passenger cars are being damaged due to the grey rock the county applies to the roads. Glass responded that he did not realize the entire county road 149 had not been graded and he will address that issue as soon as possible. Glass also stated that there have been problems with logging trucks and they were in the process of dealing with the situation. Glass stated that he was checking with the Association of Arkansas Counties into the legalities of requiring logging companies to post bonds before they begin cutting and notified Jones that this issue will be discussed at future meetings.
Jones requested permission from the court to install a fence at both ends and close county road 148. Glass stated that he would be able to put the gate up, but that the county would not grade it once it was closed off.
Regina Irizarry came before the court on behalf of the Falcon community. Irizarry stated that Falcon is located in what is called a “grey zone” and that they have no cell phone service, no internet and that it takes a very long time for any services to respond to emergencies. She told the court that they had held a community meeting on how to resolve these issues and one of the things discussed had been looking into grants to get the services that they need. Since Falcon is unincorporated, with no mayor or city council, grants must be signed and managed by the county judge. She stated that they would like to apply for grants for a community center and emergency services and they would also like to know who to contact to receive internet service in their area. The court advised her to contact the Southwest Arkansas Planning and Development District about the grants. They also encouraged her to reach out to the Public Service Commission and elected State Officials for assistance in providing internet services to that location.
The next Nevada County Court meeting will be held on Tuesday, April 14 at 5:00 pm